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Just back from my first Norfolk trip. The highlights included:

My favourite time was spent watching - 3 Marsh Harrier at Cley - consistent food passes and very close views - took me a long time to tear myself a way!

At Cley I also saw plenty of Avocets, Gadwall, Shelduck, Greylag Geese, 1 Common Sandpiper, etc
I enjoyed seeing a Hobby hunting for the first time - and even got a record shot!
It was an amazing experience to almost have a Sparrowhawk almost flying into the hide at one point even.
Little Egret....1
these were of most note....

Generally around other locations I enjoyed watching 2 Barn Owls hunting in the village where I stayed and was intrigued that the B&B had two slightly unsual visitors everyday to their garden in the form of two Red-Legged Partridge! They had named them Alan and Lin which did tickle me!

Unfortunately the rain and severe winds kept a lot at bay - but it was still a wonderful trip = uploading photos now :)

-- Edited by Lisa Naylor on Monday 13th of May 2013 11:45:15 PM

-- Edited by Lisa Naylor on Monday 13th of May 2013 11:51:57 PM

Lisa[spoiler] http://lisanaylor.zenfolio.com/

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Titchwell RSPB reserve 25/4 and 26/4

Two visits to Titchwell, but I spent a lot of time searching for one of the Cetti's Warblers that could be
heard from several different areas. Also I spent a lot of time watching two Water Voles.
One feeding (under) three feet from my feet.
And again I usually had my young dog so we had to keep to the Main Path!
So I never got to the Beach or Parrinder hide but I don't believe that I missed much

Best Sightings:

Cetti's Warbler..1 seen.
Blackcap.. 20 plus.On the Thursday there were at least a score of Blackcap in the bushes/trees from the car park
to the Centre. and more out towards Fen Hide. Both male and Female.
Water Rail ..1 In the ditch to the left of the main path going out to beach. Showing to 20 feet.
Sedge Warblers....several showing well, ''jumping'' up from the reeds regularly. Flight call or Insect catching?
Avocets ...plenty,
Swifts..2 on the 26th.
House Martin....5
Spotted Redshank..2...near full breeding plumage.
Sandwich Terns..2
Little Gulls..2
Whitethroat..1 female(called as A Lesser Whitethroat by a RSPB volunteer)
Pintail Duck..pair
Grey Plover..1... asleep on the Shooter's Marsh!
Herring Gull.... 2 pristine birds.
Geese...Brent and Greylag in abundance and 4 Canada geese.
Willow Warblers and Chiffchaff regularly seen.
Black-tailed Godwits ....c25 again very Red Islandica
Marsh Harriers..3... A pair up together and food pass seen( I missed the food pass!).Plus 1 more male.
Plus all the usual Ducks etc.
I enjoy this Placesmile

-- Edited by keith mills on Sunday 28th of April 2013 08:55:22 PM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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Hunstanton Cliffs and Norfolk Odds and Sods.

For the latter part of my week I moved from the Hotel at Kelling to a B&B in Old Hunstanton.
(This saved a lot of driving up and down the coast!)
Then each morning and evening, I walked my young dog on the Cliff tops.

Yellow Wagtail..10 plus
Swift..2 My First this year!

Particularly in the evening up to 200 large Gulls (many immature) but mainly Lesser Black-backed
drifted along the cliff edge about 150 feet up. They do not move their wings. They appear often in rows,
one row after another, and all heading East.
They are totally silent and the parade just goes on and on.

The wintering Shag that I reported on on my last visit have left for their breeding grounds. They were
considered as Juvenile/1st -Winter birds and numbers got up to 100 plus.
The Fulmars are back on the Cliffs in numbers, flying just off the Cliff edge on fixed (stiff) wings.
Herring Gulls appear quite often over the Town, sometimes on chimney pots.
Along the bushes on the cliff edge are resident House Sparrows and Starlings.
Willow Warblers are in the Church Grounds.
At dusk 3 Kestrels were seen flying inland in a loose formation. The first time I have seen this.

I have been coming to Norfolk for over 30 years but I have never seen as many Pheasant and Red-legged Partridge
as this time. Pheasants appeared in many fields, and my Pheasant avoiding skills were honed to a fine art,
as on every journey some stepped out in front of my vehicle.

Although in lesser numbers, Red-legged Partridge were very common.Two even on the Pitch and Putt between Old Hunstanton and the town.

Greylag goslings were at several reserves, and a 10 strong brood of Mallard ducklings seen with their mother at Holme.

-- Edited by keith mills on Sunday 28th of April 2013 06:26:31 PM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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23/4 Walsey Hills NOA Site.

Next to Cley is this small NOA site. The main hide is on top of the hill and is entered by members key.
It overlooks the reeded pool, known as Snipe's Pool. Narrow tracks lead into the heart of a dense
mixture of bush and trees. The main track is a Public Footpath.
The site can attract rare birds, but not today. However I enjoyed 2 hours here.
Chaffinch.... 10 plus They seemed to be singing from every other tree using a range of song and call
Great Tits..4 plus
Dunnock..4 plus.
Willow Warbler..1 or 2
Blue Tit..2
Long-tailed Tit..1
Little Grebe...1
Pochard..4 (2 Drakes)
Greylag Goose..2
Sedge Warbler heard only.

22/4 Salthouse Marsh and Beach Road.

Peregrine..1 cruising overhead, lowish
Meadow Pipits..4
Great Tit..1
Little Egrets..3
Herring Gull...12
Great Black-backed Gull...5
Shelduck..3 over.
Black-headed Gulls...few.
Greylag Geese ..plenty

-- Edited by keith mills on Sunday 28th of April 2013 04:46:23 PM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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22/4 Cley NWT Reserve.

Avocets...everywhere. The board gave 231 present this day.
Black-tailed Godwits..mostly well coloured Islandica birds . The board gave 156 present.
Curlews..in abundance
Shelduck..in abundance
Bar-tailed Godwit..1 on Arnolds Marsh
Marsh Harriers..3
White Wagtail..3
Pied Wagtail..3
Ringed Plover..3
Sandwich Terns ..18 flew in. Later up to a three figure number.
Reed Bunting..1
Common Snipe..2
Brent Geese..c40 ( All with dark belly except 1 with pale belly)

Nice to meet my namesake Chris Mills, who runs Norfolk Birding. He showed me an amazing video( on I-phone)
of pairs of Avocets pair bonding in groups.This is true folks!.... basically a few pairs form a circle,
just like in a Scottish Reel and then bow to the couple opposite. This performance goes on for sometime.
The video was taken this week.

-- Edited by keith mills on Sunday 28th of April 2013 10:25:52 AM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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Glorious Norfolk weather for our weeks holiday, ending today.smilesmile Blue skies every day, and temperatures usually 20 degrees, except one day when it got to 23 degrees.

26/4 Choseley Drying Barns.

Red-legged Partridge..12
Redstart(F)..1 watched for half an hour, as it went up and down from the hedge to the field.
Corn Bunting..2 perched in same hedge.
Common Whitethroat(F)..1 same hedge
Pied Wagtail..1

Brown Hares..4

There was not much human activity seen at the Barns( apart from a straying Birder) and I wonder how much are they being used?




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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23/4 and 24/4 Kelling Heath

A Dramatic Morning with the WOODLARKS

Two morning visits to this Heath. On the first I met the local Patch worker, and recorder, John Wagstaff,
who redirected me to the correct Woodlark area. Having managed a glimpse of a pair I returned for better views
the following morning. Again I got a glimpse of 2 as they flew off, but this time the wing markings could be seen.
I resolved to sit it out for their return. The preferred area is short vegetation near a wide path that runs
next to a railway cutting. Standing on the path for 50 minutes, there was little to see. Was I too obvious I thought?
So I started to sit down under a large gorse bush. Simultaneously 2 Woodlarks dropped down 15 yards in front
of me and started to feed. Showing really well. After 5 minutes a train came down the line powered by a steam engine.
The smoke from the engine hid the birds but then cleared. However after another minute the smoke started to drift back.
It appeared that the engine had started a fire in the cutting. As I had just signaled to a distant Birder,
that I was onto the Birds, he was making his way towards me, but was also making agitated gestures!
Looking at the fire, fanned by the breeze, I decided to cross the heath as the path back was suddenly cut off by flames!
The 2 Woodlark had already scarpered and I flushed two more on my escape ,as the Gorse that I had
been under went up in flames,with frightening ferocity
Other Birders had alerted the Crossing Keeper and 2 Fire Engines bounced along in under 15 minutes.
All was soon under control.

Apparently this is a regular event and the scorched earth soon regrows with new shoots to provide
a preferred habitat for the Woodlark.

In this case everyone seemed happy the Firemen were grinning(sorry), the Lady Gatekeeper was smiling,
A photographer was proud of his burning bush shot(flames 25 yards high).I had seen the Woodlarks
and I was told later, that they were back again within the hour.

Other Heath sightings:
Buzzards, Kestrels and Rooks nearly always over.
Willow Warbler
Long-tailed Tit
I made A big effort for the Dartford Warbler , but alas no joy.

-- Edited by keith mills on Saturday 27th of April 2013 09:25:23 PM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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Jan 18th -21st

After calling in at Little Paxton, Karen Foulkes, John Rayner, Riggers and myself headed over to Thetford, where a short walk along the river brought us brief but good views of the Black-bellied Dipper, as well as a flock of about 200 Siskins. After taking turns to spot the Kingfisher we headed off to Sculthorpe Moor to join Mike Ausberger. It seems the Golden Pheasant has decamped across the river, but we managed to find Marsh Tits, Water Rail, two Woodcock feeding at the side of the track and a very large flock of Bramblings.

In the dawn gloom at Whitlingham Country Park two male Egyptian Geese were having a right punch-up, with the female of one pair taking instant flight, while the other brayed abuse and/or encouragement from the sidelines (or possibly the Goose version of 'leave him, Farouk, he's not worth it) before joining in to chase off the looser. A possible glimpse of a Bittern, Lesser Redpoll, 21 Whooper Swans overhead and a good selection of the usual waterfowl and gulls. A brief visit to Great Yarmouth to add Mediterranean Gull to our trip list, then on to Brough Castle, where there were plenty of Marsh Harriers, but only one Buzzard, which managed not to reveal enough to be confirmed as the Rough-legged regularly reported here. A definate Bittern here as well. Reports from the Yare Valley at Cantley/Buckenham suggested that there were no geese of any kind to be seen so we headed to Stubbs Mill via the coast road where a second interesting Buzzard proved to be disappointingly Common. From the viewing platform we had 2 quartets of Common Cranes, male and ring-tailed Hen Harrier (the latter quite close) and the usual good numbers of Marsh Harrier. While digiscoping a Chinese Water Deer, messrs Rayner and Ausberger had a Barn Owl. One Lee Evans also sighted

We headed for Salthouse, where two Snow Buntings were feeding among the Turnstone in the beach car park. At Cley Eye we failed to find the two Shore Lark, but a brief sea watch produced several Gannets and two very distant shearwaters (species undetermined). 6 Brent Geese and 5 Little Gulls here as well. The White-fronted Goose flock was in fields just west of Lady Anne's Drive, where we also had Grey Partridge, and 12 Corn Buntings showed nicely, along with Yellowhammers and Chaffinches at Choseley Drying Barns. Titchwell was mostly frozen, but we managed to find Ringed and Grey Plovers, Sanderling, 3 Avocets and a nicely-marked Lapland Bunting from the public footpath. The resident female Red-crested Pochard was on the new pool east of Fen Hide, along with a pair of Pintail. A watch from Fen Hide produced 8 Marsh Harriers inc 2 males, a 2cy male Hen Harrier and 2 ring-tails (male and female judging by the size difference) and our best view of a Bittern for this trip. 51 Barnacle Geese on the grazing marsh were a bonus.

As the weather seemed to have taken a turn for the worse we headed home early, after a brif and unproductive return to Whitlingham. No luck with the Smew at Pugney's Country Park either but a creditable 109 species for the weekend, given the weather.

Bus pass birdin' great innit?

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3rd to 10th ,November....
A leisurely holiday but managed to get some birding in every day!
At Hunstanton there was an unusual phenomena of up to 60 Shags roosting on the cliffs. Arriving before dusk
I was treated to a fly past of 14 in front of my position, and then again as they turned back, before going in to roost.
Shag is usually scarce on this coast.

On the way to Snettisham Beach,in the grass field just before the car parks, was a mixed flock of
250 Pink-footed Geese together with c100 Egyptian Geese...70 of the Egyptian Geese were to one side of the Pink-footed Geese, the others were mixed in. I noticed that some of the Egyptian Geese were often in distinct small (family) groups,but this is the largest flock, in total, I have seen.
Pink -footed Geese were seen regularly flying over every day.
On Saturday leaving Titchwell late after dusk., over the car park came skein after skein. My estimate was 2500....heading towards Snettisham. More common sitings were in the order of 200-300. Quite often the skeins
would appear to change direction as though they were not sure of their course. I did not see many on the ground,
although I failed to visit Holcombe Fresh Marsh.

Brent Geese were everywhere,but not in vast numbers ,the largest gaggle was c200 on Well's Pitch and Putt. Skein's of 50 to 100 were common and some were on the shoreline at Hunstanton cliffs.
Greylag Geese were also about ,with 3 fair size skeins over, and a gaggle on marshy grass at Holme.

No sign of the White-rumped Sandpiper at Cley( last reported on the 4th Nov.)but great views of a perched juvenile Merlin near the hides. Also 2 Ruff and c250 Golden Plover.

At Flitcham Abbey Farm,the Red-legged Partridge (21) outnumbered the 2 Egyptian Geese and a Marsh Tit showed well in the bushes to the left of the hide. A Buzzard perched and ignored a Kestrel.
Two Marsh Harriers were seen at 3 sites... Holme, Titchwell,and Cley.

At Holme a Barn Owl hunted on Friday as dusk approached but the Bittern, seen regularly this week, would not show for me!

A highlight at Titchwell, on Friday afternoon, was a (real) Jack Snipe sleeping and then feeding with Teal near to the Parrinder Hide. 30 yards away from 5 common Snipe. I watched this bird for 40 minutes.
At Roydon Common, ( a first visit ) there was no sign of the Hen Harriers yet. In the scope I got great views of Redwings, Fieldfares,Blackbirds and a Wren drinking and bathing in puddles on the track.

Early on in the week flocks of migrants were seen, every few minutes, over the sand dunes and the sea at Old Hunstanton,
Among them were many Redwing and Blackbirds. At Holme, on a very wet Tuesday, virtually every bush held 3 or more Blackbirds, and on the verges,paths and roads!... an outstanding number in total.

-- Edited by keith mills on Saturday 10th of November 2012 10:44:00 PM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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We got quite excited about the northerly winds on the first day of our annual autumn Norfolk week (27th Oct) but on the beach at Titchwell frequent squally hail showers made it hard to stand up let alone see!. No birding that day. Sunday was a little better, but we got cold and wet on the sea wall at Burnham Overy looking for the little bunting which had sensibly gone off somewhere warmer. I left Mike to search Holkham Pines while I went round the Hall. Monday we did some proper birding, following a flock of 30 snow buntings from Salthouse to Cley. There was plenty of interest on the reserve pools including a white-rumped sandpiper, flocks of golden plover and marsh harriers overhead. Tuesday found us at Cley Spy where there was an obliging black redstart and the new Leica 65 on show which is now top of my Christmas list! A scenic trip through Broadland on the way to Hickling provided a small flock of waxwings, and we settled down at Stubb Mill to wait for the roost. The marsh harriers and one hen harrier put on a good display, as did a short-eared owl but for the first time in years no common cranes flew in. A small group had been seen flying over the Reserve earlier in the afternoon.

The next day we went back to Titchwell - tides and light were just right and we got superb views of 5 long-tailed duck, also slavonian grebes, eider, goldeneye and the usual busy flocks of waders on the beach. A brambling was on the Reserve feeders. Back at Salthouse at the third attempt we found the single shorelark feeding on horned poppy seeds, and in Wells Woods found a large tit flock containing scores of goldcrests and 2 yellow browed warblers. As it was raining heavily there were no dog walkers or other disturbance.

We were puzzled by the absence of large flocks of pink feet geese on the coastal grazings - previously we have seen several hundred. We found a large flock in a field of winter wheat near Chosely - perhaps they had only just arrived. Driving back through the Burnhams we spotted a Barn owl hunting close to the road and Mike was able to get some good photos.

A good week, with plenty of interest if few rarieties but I'd love to know where the geese are!


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Quick 2 day blast round norfolk,



2 Slavonian grebes on the sea and a flock of Red brested mergansers, also Eiders, Found a flyby Red kite, Cettis Warblers singing, also Female Red crested pochard on the reserve, Spotted Redshank, lots of Wigeon and Pintail, Also Avocets still present

Saturday late afternoon, 4ish, White rumped Sandpiper at Cley, seem from the right hand hide of the three together in the middle of the reserve, great bird, nice to see the white rump and pale supercillium, looked great, kept itself to itself while we saw it, not mixing with the Dunlin or any other waders, also 200 ish Golden plover present, Ruff, Redshanks, marsh harriers, Barn Owl with a good sized Vole, and good starling roost here later


Red throated Diver at about 30ft out only, Kittiwakes and gannets on the sea

just 1 shorelark reported but not seen, quite a few bramblings about and redwings, no fieldfares?

dipped again on golden pheasant in the triangle

Egyptian goose at holkham pines,

Hunstanton had surprisingly 3 swallows and 1 house martin round the clifffs

Did you see it? It was small and brown and flew that way.........................

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I had a quick visit to Titchwell last weekend and there was debate going on about whether an individual was a Baird's Sandpiper or a (mutant) Dunlin. A (not too good photograph) is in my Flickr photstream. Any thoughts, please?



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Well I have had a blinding week in Norfolk 8th-15th . I have had 95 species and 10 lifers and it would have been greedy to expect more. Highlights

RSPB Titchwell (went there twice)
Pectoral Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Bittern, Egyptian Goose, Little Stint, Spoonbill (14 together), Great and Arctic Skua, Manx Shearwater (about 30 foot away in the water) Common Scoter, Brent Goose, Sandwich Tern, Golden Plover, Eider and all the usual waders and wildfowl

Rspb Snettisham
Spotted Redshank
Marsh Harrier
Big flocks of Knott and Grey Plover

Holme NNR
Velvet Scoter
Common Scoter
(missed the Barred Warbler that was there all week)

Bearded Tit
Red Throated Diver
Pink Foot Geese.

Went to WWT Welney as well but apart from good numbers of wildfowl, a few Yellow Wagtails and close views of marsh harrier nothing much else of note. Missed the Cranes that turned up after i left.

Stayed in Hunstanton which wasnt a bad base


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Cheers for that Nick, checked out the site and it looks a goodun' so i will use that i think.


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Bill Lavery wrote:

This is brill Rob as i am going on Saturday for a week, staying in Hunstanton. First time so this has given me confirmation of places to go.

If you can, get hold of a copy of 'Best Birdwatching sites in Norfolk'. It's got all the info you'll need.

Also check out www.norfolkbirds.com.

Some of my photos. www.flickr.com/photos/nickish77

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This is brill Rob as i am going on Saturday for a week, staying in Hunstanton. First time so this has given me confirmation of places to go.


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Norfolk trip - last Friday 31st August to 1st September 2012


En route in the car:
Marsh Harrier - at the side of the main road into East Anglia (A17)

Ouse Washes:

Green Woodpecker on the path towards the southern hides
Black Tailed Godwits
Great Crested Grebe
Little Egret
Kingfisher - up and down the water channel which runs in front of the hides
Greenshank (most hides)
Dunlin (winter and summer)
Spotted redshank
Ringed Plover
Garganey (over 20)
Tufted Duck
Common Tern
Green Sandpiper
Yellow Wagtail
At least 3 different Marsh Harriers

Missed the Glossy Ibis! An environment agency boat came down the channel and scared it to the other side of the reserve! But I saw the one at the Dee estuary so it wasnt so bad. It came back and its there again today.

Lakenheath Fen:

Tried for the common crane but it wasn't to be.
2 Marsh Harriers
Very quiet at this time of year really
1 Whooper Swan

Weeting Heath NNR:

Common Buzzard
Willow Tit
Grey Partridge
Stock Dove
No sign of stone curlews, which is what this site is renowned for.

Hunstanton beach:

Knot - a load of them forming clouds as the tide moved in
Common Gull
Grey Plover
Sandwich tern

Cley NNR:

Barnacle Goose
Spoonbills (2)
1 Curlew Sandpiper
Little Ringed Plover
Little Stint
Common Sandpiper

RSPB Titchwell

Common Scoter
Golden Plover

Great trip all in all


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22nd-24th June 2012.

A weekend birding in Norfolk brought a great change from the norm.
I stayed in Snettisham, but worked my way round reserves at Titchwell, Cley, Stiffkey and Hunstanton. I didn't get round to all those I wanted to as I found myself spending too much time at each. This was a good thing.
The main highlights for me were several life ticks which included Bar-tailed Godwit and Mediterranean Gull at Snettisham beach, Spotted Redshank, Little Gull and Spoonbill at Titchwell, and Bearded Tits at Cley.
A Sacred Ibis truned up in a field while we were at Cley, it's origin, a suspected escapee.
All in all it was a fantastic trip with good weather to boot. Nice to see something different for a change. Woodlands can be a bit samey some times.

My blog: The Early Birder

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Nick Isherwood wrote:

Just added 20 photos from my Norfolk trip to my flickr page for anyone interested.

Loving the Hobbys and the Marsh Harrier!

A few of my photos : Joewynn's Flickr I've got a Blog!

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Just added 20 photos from my Norfolk trip to my flickr page for anyone interested.

Some of my photos. www.flickr.com/photos/nickish77

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Just back today from my first ever birding trip to Norfolk. There should have been three of us going but due to unforeseen circumstances the other two had to drop out. Anyway, as I didn't want to miss out on the trip I decided to go by myself.

The accommodation was a small B&B in Hunstanton called Garganey House and is run by a keen birder so there was plenty of advice available.

After my first stop on the way down at Paxton Pits (see other thread) I arrived in Norfolk at around lunchtime on Friday. I decided to kill a few hours by doing a quick recce of a few places I wanted to see, these being Wolferton Triangle and Snettisham. After here I went for a small wander down by the dunes and marsh at Holme by the sea. Besides the masses of Meadow Pipits here I managed a Whinchat, a Cuckoo and a fly through Turtle Dove. A great start.

After checking in and grabbing some tea my next plan was to go and look fir Nightjars on Dersingham bog. I found the spot ok but turned up way too early and so ended up hanging around like a spare part for a while as I waited for something to happen. I was soon joined by another chap who was also looking for the Nightjar. At around 8.15 we started seeing the odd roding Woodcock
and a Grasshopper Warbler could be heard nearby too but it wasn't until about 9.10 that the action started. We first heard the occasional burst of churring and then our eyes were suddenly drawn to 30 yards to our right were four Nightjars had appeared and were chasing eachother around. From there it just got better; on odd occasion the Nightjars buzzed around our heads at a distance of only eight feet. The light was still quite reasonable and so you could pick out lots of detail on the birds. Definitely an experience I will not forget and as there was a bit of a breeze I only got bitten once by the midges.

Saturday morning saw an early rise as i tried for a Golden Pheasant at Wolferton. After an hour of hanging around though I decided to give up and went for a walk at RSPB Snettisham. A very big reserve with some very nice habitat. Key birds noted here were several Avocet, a Whinchat and plenty Reed and Sedge Warblers.

After a hearty breakfast I then headed to Weeting Heath for the Stone Curlews. Two pairs were present but quite distant. Reasonable views were still had though and another lifer was ticked. I then found myself a Woodlark on the Heath which apparently have been a little thin on the ground this year. Apart from this the only other bird noted was a yaffling Green Woodpecker.

After Weeting I went on to RSPB Lakenheath. The size of this place is
immense. Parts of it reminded me a little of Leighton Moss Hugo reckon Lakenheath is bigger. Walking around the reserve in the heat of the sun with all my kit was a little hard work at times but the rewards were excellent. Besides the odd Marsh Harrier hunting over the reed beds there were also 6 Hobbies hawking for Dragonflies. Forty Hobbies had been reported two days earlier though - unbelievable! At one point on my walk around I came up to the river bank where two Hobbies were completely absorbed in catching dragonflies. As such, I ended up getting views down to twenty yards and also
getting probably the best photos I've ever taken.

A Golden Oriole in the second Poplar plantation kept everyone busy by constantly calling but it was impossible to locate the bird in the trees. It was hard work hanging around in the hot sun so I didn't wait around for this bird too long. Further around on the reserve I was also treated to two Cranes that have apparently bred there. The chick wasn't on view but the two adult birds' heads were clearly visible above the reeds. An excellent reserve and one I'll
definitely return to again in the future.

A short visit in the evening to a site called Gypsy Lane (at the back of Titchwell) gave me a fly over Spoonbill and a couple of Marsh Harriers too.

Sunday morning saw me visiting RSPB Titchwell. A very nice reserve with loads of good habitat. I spent a nice few hours wandering around here and besides the hoards of Reed and Sedge Warblers I also had three Cetti's Warblers and several Bearded Tits which were happily feeding young in the reedbeds in front
of me. On top of this I also had brief views of a Crane hidden in the reeds as
well as half a dozen Little Gulls and four Little Terns feeding on the saltwater

After lunch I made my way down to Cley next the sea. Another similar type of reserve to Titchwell and here I had more Marsh Harriers and another three Cetti's Warblers - one even in the car park.

A tiring but really rewarding trip down here and I'll definitely be back in the future. Overall I managed 4 new lifers and saw loads of birds which are more scarce up here.

Once I've sorted all the photos out I'll put them up on my flickr page.

-- Edited by Nick Isherwood on Monday 28th of May 2012 10:15:04 PM

Some of my photos. www.flickr.com/photos/nickish77

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Origally posted by Alex Jones on January 18th 2012:

Norfolk is one of those great places, and many birders can relate it to a past experience of a mega rareity. I went with The Biggest Twitch a couple of weeks ago to for 3 days with a aim to try and pick up as many birds as possible.
After an early start, we soon found ourselves (5 hours later) charging towards a hide at Cley Marshes for a very rare American species. The bird was a Western Sandpiper, not too dissimilar to our well-known Dunlin. He soon locked onto this very special bird feeding with a flock of Dunlin (just to try and confuse us). It wasnt too bad; the star bird was noticeably smaller and a lot fresher looking, appearing paler. We also picked up Wigeon, Teal, Golden Plover, Ruff, Brent Geese, Bearded Tit, Pintail and Avocet.

If interested in the Western Sandpiper, images from the trip here: http://www.birdingnorthwales.blogspot.com

This took us into the afternoon, where on our way to the next site, Alan spotted a Rough Legged Buzzard sitting proudly on show from the roadside. These birds are generally a lot paler in colour than the more well-known Common Buzzard and appear more Eagle-like than anything. We soaked up the views and moved on to Holken. For anyone who knows this place well, this is a real Goose fest, with thousands upon thousands of mainly Pink footed Geese. We also picked up a handful of White Fronted Geese and a couple of Barnacles there. Grey Partridge, a bird of real decline showed very well, as did the Marsh Harriers floating over the marshes. We then moved on to our last site of the day where we witnessed a raptor show with peregrines, Sparrowhawks, Hen and Marsh harriers flying across over the marshes.

The second day took us to Titchwell, another early start and we were down at the beach seawatching. Bar and Black Tailed Godwits, Grey Plover, Knot and Turnstones were all on show. A couple of passing Red-Throated Divers showed well along with 3 lovely Long-Tailed Ducks. Backtracking into the reserve, we caught up with Common Snipe, Tufted Duck, Little Egrets, Spotted Redshank and a young drake Scaup. Alan, with his excellent i.d nailed a Mediterranean Gull in flight and we were also blessed with fantastic views of Water Rail. There was also another special bird at the reserve: an Cours Arctic Redpoll which gave amazing views from the overhead birch trees. These were accompanied by their more familiar Lesser Redpoll which are browner in colour.

Moving on at the speed of light with no time to lose, we took off to Buckenham Marshes whereby another mega rareity was spending its winter. It was a Lesser White Fronted Goose typically from Russia! This one was proving a lot more difficult to track down. The goose was supposed to be hanging around with the Taiga Bean Geese which were a lot easier to see. After a good 45 minutes, the hope was fading until a guy who was watching nearby called it now when I say we saw the bird, we were incredibly jammy as the bird literally came straight up out of one ditch and walked straight down into another gone, all within a space of 10 seconds. Okay, no time to waste, lets go! We werent going to get any better views.
The next bird to get was a Ring Necked Duck showing well from a lake a few miles from the goose site and this was followed by 6 Common Cranes and a Yellowhammer at Hickling broad NWT to end the day off nicely.

The next day was spent at Wolferton Triangle where a splendid male Golden Pheasant but on a fantastic display. It waltzed across the road without a care in the world, it hardly stirred when a speeding car zoomed past it. Amazing! Soon after, we were rewarding with brilliant views of Barn Owl on the side of the road on the way back to the hotel for breakfast. We were staying at Hunstanton so after breakfast we decided to seawatch from the cliff. Fulmars cruised past while on the sea, Red Breasted Mergansers, Common Scoter, Eider, Razorbill and 4 Velvet Scooters showed off nicely.

After a nice view of a Short Eared Owl, we thought wed leave Norfolk for some quality time at Stirtloe Sewage Works. What was the attraction? Well, 7 smew and a Ferruginous Duck of course! These birds showed amazingly on a nearby lake. These were also joined by a cracking Yellow Legged Gull, Treecreeper and a Green Woodpecker also on site.
This marked a fantastic end to a mind blowing trip to Norfolk. Our trip total was just short of 130 birds which also made a great start to our yearlists.


Many Thanks to Alan and Ruth (The Biggest Twitch)

Images of Western Sandpiper, Arctic Redpoll, Rough-Legged Buzzard, Golden Pheasant and other specialities from the trip, please visit http://www.birdingnorthwales.blogspot.com

-- Edited by Alex Jones on Wednesday 18th of January 2012 09:26:35 PM


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Me and my better half spent the week in Norfolk/Suffolk from Monday to Friday.On the drive down there we had a yellowhammer at a service station near Corby red kite around the same area hunting low down giving good views.a couple of suicidal grey partridges flew across the motorway and not far from our destination was a red legged partridge sar on a manure pile.on the way we stopped off at weeting heath and just missed the stone curlew by 15 mins.did manage 3 woodlark green woodpecker displaying curlew plenty of muntjac and a marsh tit in full voice.
Picked up some cracking birds where we were staying including cetti's warbler Egyptian goose male marsh Harrier male hen harrier and a cuckoo calling from a tree opposite the barge we were staying on!
We then spent 3 days around minsmere and decided to stop off at welney wet on the way back.good start to the day when we saw a cuckoo from the car park perched calling from a tree on the reserve and saw a black tailed godwit performing display flight over lady fen.
On the reserve were a male yellow wagtail 5 little ringed plover stock dove 2 common tern avocet 9 whooper swan marsh harrier buzzard kestrel sparrowhawk and 3 little egrets(one in summer plumage).also on lady fen was a fortunate/unfortunate common gull with an injured wing but within the fox proof fencing.plenty of the usual stuff about.return journey produced very little as it was persisting down and I was half asleep!
Good trip and minsmere was superb.


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6 Bolton RSPB members spent Monday-Friday in Norfolk last week. Had brilliant weather - sunshine every day but slightly windy so was still pretty chilly on the coast.

Highlights as follows:

Monday 19/03/12:
Choseley Barns
Corn bunting
House sparrow (no tree sparrows)
Grey partridge
Red legged partridge

Lesser redpoll
Mealy redpoll - couldn't see any sign of the Arctic
Dark bellied brent goose
Golden plover
Grey plover
Ringed plover
Bar tailed godwit
Spotted redshank
Marsh harrier
Red breasted merganser
Long tailed duck
Red necked grebe
(last 4 on the sea).

On the way to the hotel we spotted a barn owl and then saw a tawny owl at the hotel itself.

Tuesday 20/03/12
Kelling Quags
Marsh tit
Egyptian goose
Dark bellied brent goose

Marsh harrier
Bearded tit
Bar tailed godwit
Water rail (really good views as it worked its way feeding up a channel)
Ringed plover
Cetti's warbler (heard only)

Wednesday 21/03/12
Fellbrigg Hall
Whooper swan
Mistle thursh

Sea Palling
Red throated diver

Stubb Mill
Common crane
Marsh harrier
Hen harrier
Short eared owl
Tawny owl at the car park

Thursday 22/03/12
Kelling Heath
Dartford warbler

Holkham Gap
Shore lark
Red breasted merganser

Holkham pines
Marsh harrier
Blackcap (heard only - couldn't find it in the dense vegetation!)

Burnham Overy
White fronted goose

Didnt see any sign of the rough legged buzzard.

Friday 23/03/12
Water rail
Egyptian goose


Abbey Farm, Flitcham
Little owl
Egyptian goose
Grey partridge
Red legged partridge

Over the week the expected duck & wader species were seen at all the coastal locations: gadwall, wigeon, teal, shoveler,shelduck, pochard, avocet, redshank, dunlin, ruff, oystercatcher, lapwing. There were also plenty of the usual garden birds around and an unbelievable number of woodpigeons - you couldn't go 2 minutes without seeing them.

-- Edited by Holly Page on Thursday 29th of March 2012 08:19:53 AM


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Late report from last weekend. I ventured down with my wife and 3 month old baby son, so birding took on a new dimension, but was still pretty constructive with 109 species seen.

I went down last Weds evening till Sunday afternoon, so arrived in time for the start of the big freeze, which seemed to have spooked many of the birds off the usual north coast haunts. I was staying in West Runton and spent most of my time along the north coast, but the usual 1,000s geese and other wildfowl/waders were not in supply in the usual spots and the Western Sandpiper did a disappearing act along with the 1,000 odd of his Dunlin pals and spread themselves thin over many square km's of marsh and grassland, so was unable to find it despite my best efforts. However, here are some of the highlights of the trip, which to name a few were Black-throated Diver off West Runton, finding a male Firecrest at Holkham, watching a Rough-legged Buzzard come in to roost at Holkham, picking out Lapland Buntings from large Skylark flocks and splitting the Willow and Marsh Tits at Sculthorpe Moor!? All great fun:

THURSDAY - 2nd Feb 2012
West Runton 0730-0900hrs (cold light-mid easterly)

Red-throated Diver 70 (mostly W to E)
Black-throated Diver 1 (W to E)
Gannet 2
Fulmar 4
Cormarant 3
Guillemot 20+
Razorbill 6+
Wigeon 6
Common Scoter 2
Golden Plover 1
Lapwing 50+

Salthouse 1130-1200
Snow Bunting 50+
Turnstone 20+
Dunlin 80+
Marsh Harrier 2
Red-throated Diver 2
Dark-bellied Brent Goose 120
Greenland White-fronted Goose 29
Barnacle Goose 1
Ruff 8

Cley 1200-1330
Marsh Harrier 3
Merlin 1
Dunlin 200+
Curlew 30+
Golden Plover 14
Redshank 20+
Ruff 50+
Avocet 12
Pintail 8
DB Brent Goose 300+
Wigeon 150+
Teal 250+
Gadwall 2
Skylark 12

Holkham Pine 1400-1630
Firecrest 1
Goldcrest 5
Snipe 2
Rough-legged Buzzard 1 (spotted by the wife)
Common Buzzard 1
Kestrel 1
Barn Owl 3

FRIDAY - 3rd Feb 2012
Sherringham - 0800-0900hrs (clear, cold, mild westerly)

Red-throated Diver 55 (mostly W to E)
Great Crested Grebe 1
Gannet 3
Fulmar 3
Cormarant 1
Guillemot 6
Razorbill 2
Pochard 3
Dunlin 3
Ringed Plover 6
Turnstone 20+
Curlew 1

Salthouse - 0900-0930hrs (clear, cold, frozen water)
Snow Bunting 50+
Turnstone 20+
Dunlin 40+
Marsh Harrier 1
Red-throated Diver 6
Dark-bellied Brent Goose 28
Greenland White-fronted Goose 29

Walsey Hills 0940-1000hrs (water frozen)
Bullfinch 1
Skylark 1

Cley - 1000-1115hrs (cold, light westerly)
Marsh Harrier 4 (3f, 1m)
Peregrine 2 (pair?)
Dunlin 500+
Turnstone 40+
Curlew 10+
Redshank 20+
Ruff 45+
Grey Plover 3
Pintail 20+
DB Brent Goose 500+
Wigeon 1000+
Teal 1000+
Gadwall 3
Skylark 10
Linnet 20+
Goldfinch 40+

Sculthorpe Moore 1430-1600
R.L.Partridge 8+
Fieldfare/Redwing 50+
Woodcock 1
Marsh Tit 8+
Willow Tit 2
Bullfinch 2
GS Woodpecker 1 (heard only)
Common Buzzard 2
Water Rail 1
Goldcrest 1

Muntjac Deer 1

SATURDAY - 4th Feb 2012
Burnham 1100hrs

Lapland Bunting 6
Skylark 60+
Egyptian Goose 2+2 (nearby fields)

Titchwell 1130-1400
Little Grebe 1
DB Brent Goose 3000+
Shoveller 16
Pochard 8
Pintail 30+
Gadwall 4
Teal 300+
Wigeon 500+
Bar-tailed Godwit 1
Black-tailed Godwit 5
Dunlin 100+
Redshank 20+
Marsh Harrier 3
Little Egret 2
Lesser Redpoll 20+ (couldn't find Arctic, as flock very mobile and in poor light)

Chinese Water Deer 1

Holkam Pine 1430-1600
Common Buzzard 1
Wigeon 400+
Goldeneye 3
Little Grebe 3
DB Brent Goose 5000 (distant in flight)
Pink-footed Goose 100+
Skylark 200+
Coal Tit 2
Goldcrest 6

Muntjac 2


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As Rob's list but with Ferruginous Duck swopped for Shrike, plus 2 Bitterns, 5-9 Cranes and a passing Spoonbill.

You didn't recongnise Messrs Rigby & Rayner 'cos they were cunningly disguised as Oldham Birders.

Bus pass birdin' great innit?

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Dipped the Shrike but added Western Sand, Arctic Redpoll (2), Lesser Whitefront, Taiga Bean, Ferruginous Duck, Waxwing and Snow Bunting as well as nearly every other goose sp in a two day raid.

Some odd characters about posing as Mancunian birders - Mssrs Rayner & Rigby although we all managed not to realise it at the time.


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Quick scoot down this week produced:

Western Sandpiper with the Dunlin at Cley as well as cracking views of female Sparrowhawk, Avocet, Pintail, hundreds of Golden Plover plus Snow Buntings at the coastguard station.

The bacon butties in the cafe have improved but are still over priced at £3.85.

Arctic redpoll at Titchwell as well as Yellow-legged Gull, two Scaup, Snipe, Little Egret.

Great Grey Shrike behind the football ground at Fakenham (opposite Morrisons).


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Hiya Dave, Ive sent you a P.M. Cheers, Mark

-- Edited by Mark Evans on Tuesday 15th of November 2011 05:01:14 PM


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I've sent you a PM!


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Norfolk Pine Martens

Hi all,

I'm the Norfolk Mammal Recorder and so have been following this thread with interest. I was sent a photo of a Pine Marten alledgedly taken at Dersingham Bog, close to Wolferton, in June of this year. The ID of the animal was without doubt, but from the background (rhodedendrons and pines) it was impossible to tell whether it had been taken in Scotland or NW Norfolk. Unfortunately, the photographer did not reply to any subsequent emails from either myself or the NE warden.

None of the wardens in the area have been informed of any other sigthings, so i would be grateful if you could send me a date and grid reference for your sighting, Mark, and the URLs of the reports you refer to, Phil.

Most of the reports i receive of Pine Martens are mink, and there is no possibility that we have a truly wild population, but given the rate at which folk release mammals such as Red Squirrels into the area, I would not exclude the possibility that someone has gone a step further (i've also had verified records of Racoon and wallaby sp. recently). Given the potential impact that releasing a major predator could have on some of the scarce bird species nesting in that area, it is important that we get to the bottom of this ASAP.

Cheers, Dave


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RE: Norfolk

Cant thank you enough for that post Phil. I could sense people nudging each other and crossing the street as I approached!
I didnt see any Golden Pheasants this time but one was screeching away in the cover of the dense road-side bushes.
On and around Dersingham Bog were singing Tree Pipits, a reeling Grasshopper Warbler, roding Woodcock and a churring Nightjar (this was back in May by the way).
Great place to explore and well worth a visit at dawn or dusk.
Now to find a Lynx in Oldham!
Cheers, Mark


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Hi Mark,

Very interesting sighting indeed this, as you say, sounds unbelievable and can quite understand Ferret or Polecats being mentioned.

After doing a bit of research on the internet, apparently there have been at least 4 seperate sightings of Pine Marten in or around that area in the last 2 years?

Henry Cook and myself saw Golden Pheasant and Muntjac Deer at Woolferton during our Norfolk trip in June but a Pine Marten would have been even more special!


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Quick weekend blast round norfolk,

Dipping on firecrests at holkham pines

Kept missing the cattle egret around in the area,

Did pick up a rough legged buzzard at west holkham pines area and lapland bunting at salthouse carpark area, also 1 sabines gull and 2 red throated divers on the sea, usual sanderling, knot, grey plovers, avocets, ringed plover, dunlin along the coast, 2 spotted redshanks at titchwell and 1 at wells, greenshank at titchwell, around 300+ golden plovers at cley, and high numbers of brent geese and pink feet everywhere, also egyptian geese, 3 barnacles, 2 greenland white fronted geese at holkham that we also dipped on, no barn owls which was a shock this weekend, cettis singing and giving quick views at cley and titchwell, marsh harriers at most sites, a few dips but a good weekends birdin

Did you see it? It was small and brown and flew that way.........................

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Hi Ian,
Thanks for the info mate, but unbelievable as it sounds, this was definitely a Pine Marten. Ive seen one near Abernethy many years ago and Ive also been lucky enough to see true Polecats in Cheshire as well as plenty of Mink and Stoats. Even without seeing these though, there was no mistaking the Norfolk sighting. The habitat was surprisingly similar to where you'd expect to find them, but it just seems very strange that no-one else has spotted one here. Unless they have and ive just let the cat out of the bag


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Hi Mark,

Pine Martens are only locally common in the most remoter parts of Scotland - the only thing I can suggest is Polecat ?

EDIT - Just as an afterthought I have looked in the 2008 Norfolk Bird & Mammal Report (the most recent one I have), and it mentions a Ferret with a dark Polecat-like mask near Feltwell (don`t personally know where this is). No other mention of Polecats and definitely NO mention of Pine Martens....

Hope this helps you Mark. An interesting sighting either way

-- Edited by Ian Woosey on Sunday 23rd of October 2011 04:28:39 PM


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Apologies in advance for the mammal theme here (I was looking for Golden Pheasants at the time!), but earlier this year whilst curb-crawling around Wolferton Triangle at first-light I stopped to watch a Muntjac on the side of the road when a PINE MARTIN jumped into the road right in front of me! Excellent, if brief veiws and 100% certain of its ID. I was just wondering if anyone else has seen, or knows of these gorgeous animals in this well-birded area? And I didnt have mushrooms for brekky before anyone asks


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Cley - first winter citrine wagtail. Curlew sandpiper, two green sandpipers, spotted redshank, adult male marsh harrier.

Titchwell RSPB - Buff breasted sandpiper, cattle egret, little egret, male/female/jubvenile marsh harriers, cetti's warbler heard.



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Holkam fresh marsh - Spoonbill (1), Little egret (5), adult female Marsh Harrier.

Titchwell RSPB - 12 curlew sandpipers, 20 ruff. On beach - sanderlings, bar-tailed godwits, grey plover, knot, oystercatchers, sandwich terns. ringed plovers.



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Pensthorpe - 3 Buzzards, 1 hobby.

Holcombe fresh marsh - 1 spoonbill, 3 muntjac deers crossing path.



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Holkham Park - 9 Egyptian Geese.

Titchwell RSPB - Greenshank (1), Ruff (10), Avocet (1), Dunlin (2), Curlew Sandpiper (2).
Weather bad, could not access beach due to unexploded bomb found! RAF bomb squad arrived!

Colin and Sue


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Cley marshes - adult female yellow wagtail and two juvenile. Adult male marsh harrier and juvenile - green sandpiper, 4 spotted redshank, 1 little egret, 200 plus black tailed godwit.

Colin and Sue


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Week on the north Norfolk coast.
Sunday 4 September - Holme NOA
Artic Skua (2), Common Scoter 100 plus, Sanderling (5), Common and Sandwich Terns.

Titchwell RSPB - Little Egret (1), Curlew Sandpiper (6), Spotted Redshank (2), Hobby (1), Little Stint(3), Cettis Warbler (2) heard only.

Colin and Sue


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To continue my holiday thread (see new Dorset thread) I just spent several weeks away in the UK, a week in Dorset and a week in Norfolk. Not the usual combination of counties to visit you might think, but after the last two weeks I would certainly recommend a visit to them both, with 140 species seen over 16 days, 114 in Dorset and 117 on Norfolk and I wasn't even on a birding trip!?!

I have placed the highlights of the various walks and places I visited into the following, but I hope to write a proper trip list together for this holiday for the Forum:

Monday 8th August Cley and Holt
(Clear, but windy - from the W)

First day in Norfolk I always like to have a stroll around Cley, what a fantastic place. It was pretty windy though, so not many reed bound birds visible or heard, but the waders made up for it. We spent the afternoon in Holt, which was holding many art and craft exhibitions mostly on birds and wildlife, which was superb - though pretty much all of it was affordable - who are these rich birders that can pay £7,000 for a bronze owl!?!?

Spoonbill 13
Little Egret 4
Egyptian Goose 4
Gadwall 4
Marsh Harrier 1 (female)
Wood Sandpiper 1
Pectoral Sandpiper 1
Little Stint 3
Dunlin 400
Redshank 20+
Spotted Redshank 7
Greenshank 6
Ruff 1 (juv)
Knot 1
Sandwich Tern 4
Common Tern 20+
Guillemot 1
Yellow Wagtail 20+
Meadow Pipit 10+
Linnet 30+

It was fantastic seeing so many shanks all together, there are not many places where you can watch half a dozen of each species, some side by side for that photographers dream. A knot in the distance on one of pools was an added bonus.

Tuesday 9th August Titchwell and Wells
(cloudy with sunny spells, still a westerly and northerly wind

Today my wife and I opted for a more leisurely approach to the day (my wife is 6 months pregnant ). I thought it was time to investigate the Titchwell hide that everyone was talking about so much earlier in the year, so off we went.... All I can say on behalf of my wife and I is what a mistake they seem to have made there. The old hides were a little on the fragile side, but to take down low lying wooden hides and replace them with tall glass structures with banging doors and a strange concrete interior for people to stare at the sky from I am not sure what they were trying to do apart from upset birders?! Anyway, the reserve did not offer the usual birds, as lots of works were being conducted on the new banking. However, there were still a few birds here and there After Titchwell we had a stroll out from Wells along the sea wall, watching the terns and other birds on the flats there.

Little Egret 6
Gadwall 8
Teal 2
Dunlin 40
Turnstone 2
Grey Plover 1 - stunning bird in summer plumage
Lapwing 20+
Curlew 8
Whimbrel 3
Spotted Redshank 1
Greenshank 1
Snipe 1
Common Sandpiper 1
Redshank 12
Ruff 23
Little Tern 20+
Sandwich Tern 10+
Arctic Tern 1
Common Tern 40+
Guillemot 1
Yellow Wagtail 3+
Meadow Pipit 10+
Linnet 30+

Wednesday 10th August Sculthorpe Moor, Great Ryburgh, Wells and Cley

After spending a few days on the coast we opted for a few galleries and a stroll around Sculthorpe, where they have a few Harvest mice in the visitor centre - lovely little creatures, so small. The reserve gets better and better every time I visit, with new hides, extra walkways and maturing habitats and the £4 entry fee is well worth it to secure the area for future years.

Sculthorpe Moor
Little Grebe 1
Marsh Harrier 1 (adult male)
Sparrowhawk 2 (1 pair)
Willow Tit 6
Marsh Tit 2
Bullfinch 4
Grasshopper Warbler 2

Great Ryburgh

Not many Honey Buzzards have been seen here this year and so I expected to draw a blank to be honest. However, within 30 minutes, after watching a few Green Woodpecker, a couple of Common Buzzards and a few Hobbys fly by up one popped, giving me three views of it, whilst it perched on the tree tops after soaring over the woodland. I was made up.

Honey Buzzard

Thursday 11th August West Runton, Cley & Cromer (also Amozona Zoo, Cromer)
(south westerly/westerly, with a mixture of sunshine and light rain)
West Runton

West Runton may not offer the wide panoramic views like Titchwell, Sherringham or Cromer, but you can park right next to the shelter and it is only a minute from the flat I stay in, so perfect for an early morning on holiday!"? Despite the wind being in the "wrong" direction I saw a few good birds flying about, but the best ones were pretty far out to be fair, shame it wasn't an easterly or even a northerly!?

Common Scoter 1
Manx Shearwater 1
Fulmar 4
Whimbrel 1
Oystercatcher 5
Common Tern 5
Sandwich Tern 46
Gannet 58
Arctic Skua 2

After seawatching for a couple of hours I popped over to Cley, but only to the hide overlooking the North Scrape.

Spoonbill 13
Egyptian Goose 5
Marsh Harrier 1 (female)
Little Stint 1 (juv)
Dunlin 250
Avocet 8
Ruff 14
Redshank 14
Spotted Redshank 1
Common Tern 8
Yellow Wagtail 2

After that I went for breakfast with the wife and we spent the day on the beach in Cromer, where I even got up close with a Little Gull whilst enjoying an ice cream on the pier

Friday 12th August Hickling Broad (boat trip)
(cloudy, but warm and little wind. Some brighter spells in afternoon)

All I can say about this day was wow. Having been to Hickling and Horsey Broads on many occasions and even going up the Tower Hide in the woods once (although not officially - ) I decided to take the wife on a boat trip. They weren't going to run the 11 o'clock boat, as nobody was signed up, but on request they took my wife and I on a 2 hour trip around Hickling Broad, to the Tower Hide and the remote hides on the scrapes that are only accessed by boats run by the NWT. Cracking to get so close to some of the birds and from the Tower Hide we saw Cranes dancing, Bitterns flying about and Marsh Harriers aplenty

Bittern 1 (in flight for long time)
Egyptian Goose 14+
Barnacle Goose 20+
Black Swan 1
Common Crane 3 (plus 7 at Stubb Mill incl 1 juv)
Teal 200+
Marsh Harrier 7+
Kestrel 3
Hobby 1
Sparrowhawk 2
Greenshank 3
Redshank 4
Ruff 5
Avocet 8+
Dunlin 2
Ringed Plover 1
Black-tailed Godwit 14 (incl 1 icelandic race bird)
Great Crested Grebe
Lapwing 70+
Common Tern 20+
Bearded Tit 2

Saturday 13th August Cley
Last day of birding, as Sunday was for other things and Monday was packing and home . One last trip to Cley, while the sun shone and the wind had died a little. not quite as rich in birds as earlier in the week, but still cracking all the same.

Spoonbill 11
Little Egret 6
Egyptian Goose 20+
Teal 40
Marsh Harrier 2
Hobby 1
Little Stint 1 (juv)
Dunlin 300
Knot 1
Curlew Sandpiper 1 (adult)
Common Sandpiper 2
Green Sandpiper 3
Black-tailed Godwit 100+
Avocet 15+
Snipe 3
Ruff 15+
Ringed Plover 12+
Redshank 14
Spotted Redshank 7
Greenshank 6
Common Tern 20+
Sandwich Tern 2
Yellow Wagtail 10+

We had a walk around the cliff tops where I searched for passerines in the scrub and bushes around West Runton on the Sunday morning, as it had rained during the night, but nothing but hoards of hirrundines over the fields, lots of Skylark and Meadow Pipit and the odd Yellow Wagtail. All in all another cracking week and to get 140 species on any holiday when not all about birding is cracking, even more so when it is all in 2 counties in England in August!? Who needs foreign holidays heh!?

I can only dwell on birds I may have missed, such as Cetti's Warbler, Red-legged Partridge and Tree Sparrow, but having seen at close quarters my first Pectoral Sandpiper since I found on in NW Ireland about 20 years ago, seeing a cracking Curlew Sandpiper with a lovely red chest, the wife finding a flock of Cranes at Stubb Mill and having prolonged views of Bearded Tits I have no complaints, simply wonderful times had..............

-- Edited by Sean Sweeney on Tuesday 16th of August 2011 07:32:13 PM


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Just back from a four day trip to Norfolk staying at the very picturesque High Sands Creek Campsite in Stiffkey with my son and a friend.

Monday 11th April

Dersingham Bog and Wolferton Triangle

Glorious sunny weather but no sign of Wood Lark or Golden Pheasant, however Dersingham Bog proved to be a good sight for raptor watching. Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, Buzzard and Red Kite all seen from here.

Stiffkey Fen

A brief heavy shower delayed our evening walk along the coast to this site. However it was worthwhile as we had fantastic views of a Barn Owl hunting. We reconnected with this bird a few minutes later as I spotted it sat on a post just 15 metres away, the bird was aware of our presence but did not seem to mind as it sat there for a few minutes. Highlights on the fen where a pair of Med Gulls and a pair of Little Ringed Plover, a Cetti's Warbler tormented us from the shrubs with its explosive song.

Tuesday 12th

Much cooler today with a strong North Westerley wind but sunny.

Titchwell RSPB

Yellow Wagtail, White Wagtail and Grey Plover from the Parrinder Hide and a pair of Garganey skulking in a partially hidden pool from the main drag.

Choseley Drying Barns

Highlight here was a flock of 20 Corn Buntings feeding on the ground on the public footpath.

Holkham Pines

A number of Egyptian Geese and a reeling Grasshopper Warbler (Not seen) were the only birds of note.

Wednesday 13th

Again cool and windy but sunny throughout.

Stiffkey Fen

Nothing different from previous visit except Sedge Warbler sighted, Cetti's still playing hide and seek, guess what? We lost again!


Managed to see four Shorelark at the top end of the east bank but the reserve was VERY quiet today. No bearded Tits at all, the locals seem to think that they have been hit very hard by Decembers weather.

Stiffkey Fen

Another evening walk to the Fen gave us views of 400 Brent Geese in nearby fields and we bumped into our old friend the Barn Owl again.

Thursday 14th

Cloudy but still.

Titchwell RSPB

I decided to try Titchwell again on the way home, a good job too! From the Fen Hide we spotted a pair of Red Crested Pochard. An Iberian Chiffchaff was singing its head off and showing well, a Cetti's started singing and decided to show itself very well indeed! A House Martin joined the many Sand Martins flying over the reserve and a summer plumaged Spotted Redshank was seen from Parrinder.

Snettisham RSPB

Struggled to hear any birds at first due to our US friends flying F-15 Fighter Jets just offshore. Picked up our first Whitethroat of the year but no sign of Grasshopper Warblers in the scrub.

Five pairs of Med Gulls from the Roost Hide and a single Wheatear on the way back.

All in all not a bad little trip but quiet at times.


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A five day trip to North Norfolk by 6 Bolton RSPB regulars. Monday to Friday
(21/3 to 25/3) last week. Full Trip report to follow but smile.gifHIGHLIGHTS as:

Common Crane 4............ Feeding and flying, Horsey and Stubb Mill.
Jack Snipe 1.......... Feeding, Fen Hide Titchwell.
Green Woodpecker 1 ....Kelling Heath
Red Kite 1................... Kelling Heath
Bearded Tits 4................Cley and Titchwell.
Sand Martin 1..........Titchwell
Lapland Bunting 2.... West Runton
Water Rail 1... Titchwell
Water Pipit 1.... Titchwell
Red Neck Grebe 1 ..Titchwell,Sea
Velvet Scoter c12.....Titchwell,Sea.
Bramling 2.... Kelling heath
Spoonbill 1....Cley
Pale Bellied Brent Geese 4... at Cley
Ruddy Duck 2
Peregrine 1 ...on kill at Burnham Overy marsh
Ross's Goose 1..... with Barnacle Geese at Cley(see trip report for comments)
Shorelarks 6...... Cley
Marsh Harriers c20.. .spread over Sites
Barn Owls 3
Mandarin duck 3 ..Felbrigg Park
Goldcrest 1... Kelling Heath
Mediterranean Gull 1... Thornham Estuary.
Fulmar 5....Hunstanton.
Spotted Redshank 2... Titchwell
Corn Bunting .....12 Choseley Barn
Grey Partridge 4 Choseley Barn and Thornham behind sea wall.

Plenty other stuff...... Group count 120 species.

-- Edited by keith mills on Saturday 26th of March 2011 07:35:39 AM

-- Edited by keith mills on Saturday 26th of March 2011 07:54:13 AM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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Just got back from a weekend in Norfolk,
Have to agree the Parrinder is excellent well worth a visit.

Black tailed godwit
Golden Plover
Water pipiit
Sand Martin - YES on the far sand bank as you walk towards the parrinder - only saw 2 as the RSPB vol pointed them out. !!
Hen Harrer one on the right female and one the left male
Velvet Scoter

At Cley - had two shore larks about 3 feet in front of us, - so well camouflaged we nearly walked on them.
Barn Owl
Little Egret
Marsh Harrier

We also did Penthorpe - lots of ususal waders about plus a spotted woodpecker and brambling.
We camped at Deers Glade and had a barn owl at the back of the woods - watched it quartering a field for ages, got a killl only to be stolen by a sparrowhawk!
Brilliant views of it. and some good pics too


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Have to say that the Parrinder was perfectly positioned for our stance at Thornham, the Northern Harrier was on the ground in line with the hide, and thus it was relatively easy to guide my wife on to the bird of the weekend. But it is a monstrosity (the hide not the bird).

Spent 3 days around Hunstanton with a group this last weekend, and racked up 121 species between us. Highlights at Titchwell were Water Pipit, Water Rail, Twite, Snow Bunting, Velvet Scoter, Spotted Redshank and Cetti's Warbler. 73 Corn Buntings at Choseley. 2 adult male Golden Pheasants at Wolferton, 15+ Lapland Buntings at Weybourne, 5 Shorelarks at Cley and a terrific performance by the Harrier.

And best of all I'll be back in a fortnight for another four days!


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Hi Keith.

It's not so much the size as the fact that it dominates both the fresh marsh and the surrounding landscape. We could see it over the top of the public causeway from Thornham.

A more sympathetic treatment - dark wood to blend with the bare earth, which would weather lighter as the bank got greener and some of those new-fangled living roofs that they've had at Martin Mere for the odd decade or three- would have helped the outside look.

You've a choice of Holly bush. Either the one in front of the hide, to the right of the feeders or the one on the right just past the hide behind the wicker screen. Happy pheasant-hunting

BTW we were told there are a few others around if you miss this one.

Cheers, Mike.

Bus pass birdin' great innit?

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cry.gifSounds like thumbs down on the new version of the Parrinder hide,Having read the comments of Riggers and Mike!
I recall sometime ago being asked to vote and comment on various new windows
being trialled in Titchwell's Fen hide. If I remember correctly mine were:
'Noisy, Stiff and break easily'

I'm not against big hides per se, as I do not like the inverted bath tubs at WWT Welney. However we will get a Bolton perspective on Parrinder in March as 6 of us visit for 4 days!

Glad you got the Northern Harrier but I need to know where the Holly bush is as I have dipped twice on the Golden Pheasant!

-- Edited by keith mills on Sunday 30th of January 2011 10:58:48 AM




Rumworth List 2019, species to date: 63 Latest: Sand Martin, Reed Bunting, Redshank, Pink-footed Goose, Curlew.



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